In this episode of Trekking Through Compliance, we consider the episode Patterns of Force which aired on February 16, 1968, Star Date 2534.0.

Story Synopsis

When the Enterprise approaches the inner planet Ekos to investigate the cessation of communication with researcher John Gill, it is attacked with a rocket carrying a nuclear weapon. This is puzzling as well as dangerous, since neither the outer planet Zeon nor the inner planet Ekos is technologically advanced enough to possess rockets or nuclear warheads. The Enterprise retreats to maximum orbital distance and Kirk and Spock beam down (after having position-broadcasting transponders surgically implanted in case of mishaps).

Kirk and Spock discover that a Nazi movement has swept the planet, complete with genocide of the “Zeon pigs” residing on Ekos. They view a public newscast in which the Iron Cross second class is presented to Daras, hero of the Fatherland. Kirk and Spock are also shocked to learn that Gill appears to be the leader of the planet’s Nazi movement.

When they are approached and questioned by a Nazi Lieutenant, they overpower him and Spock steals his uniform. Spock then pretends that Kirk is a Zeon he has captured and nerve pinches a Gestapo commander who wishes to take charge of Kirk. This provides Kirk’s uniform, and Spock compliments Kirk by telling him “You should make a very convincing Nazi.”

As Kirk and Spock make their way to see the Führer, they are confronted by a Nazi S.S. Major after Spock neglects to salute him. The Major becomes suspicious, and Spock is exposed when he is forced to remove his helmet. Spock and Kirk are then whipped in the process of being interrogated. Nazi Party Chairman Eneg interrupts the “questioning” and tells the Nazis to lock up Kirk and Spock for an hour, in contradiction to standing orders to execute prisoners after interrogation.

In prison, Kirk and Spock speak to an imprisoned Zeon (whom they had previously encountered being beaten on the street by the Nazis) and find that the Nazi movement began several years ago (corresponding with the arrival of Gill). They escape from prison by making a primitive laser from the rubindium crystals in their transponders using their cell’s incandescent bulb as the excitation source. Spock hides outside the cell and then nerve pinches the guard when Kirk summons him under the pretext of wanting to talk. Kirk and Spock also allow the Zeon prisoner to tag along.

Kirk and Spock penetrate Nazi headquarters with the help of Secretary Daras and Chairman Eneg. They discover that Gill is only the drugged puppet of deputy Führer Melakon after he gives a stilted speech unleashing the final assault on Zeon. McCoy is beamed down and manages to barely overcome the drug. Gill tells them that he started the Nazi movement to unify the planet because it was the most efficient system Earth ever knew. With an extra hypo from Kirk, Gill manages to call back the invasion fleet and denounce Melakon as a traitor. Melakon grabs a machine-gun and kills Gill, only to be shot himself. Chairman Eneg takes over and stops the killing, declaring that “it is time to live the way our Fürher intended. Kirk and company then return to the Enterprise in peace.

Fun Fact

John Meredyth Lucas wrote this episode out of his fascination with the functioning of totalitarian regimes (especially Nazi Germany) and their ability to stay in power. William Shatner quoted him to Chris Kreski, in Star Trek Memories, as saying that “it was fun to write a well-meaning Nazi, a guy who for the right cause completely fucked everything up. Y’know, we started with the question, ‘How did Nazism get past the street gangs and take root among the basically decent people? How did sane, reasonable adults come to buy into this?’ The answer seemed to be because it was efficient and because, in a society beset by all kinds of problems, it may have seemed like a feasible necessity. So it becomes feasible, and the people take that leap.”

Compliance Takeaways:

  1. What happens when good men go bad?
  2. Your own sales force can be the best assessor of risk.
  3. Why is regime change such a prescient risk?


Excruciatingly Detailed Plot Summary by Eric W. Weisstein for Patterns of Force of Force

JULY 20, 2019 BY TOM FOX

In today’s edition of Daily Compliance News:

  • Roger Ng in negotiations with DOJ for guilty plea.(Bloomberg)
  • Feds charge CCO with conspiracy to distribute opioids. (WSJ)
  • Trump to try and block Amazon contract with Pentagon. (Washington Post)
  • Boeing takes $7.3bn charge for 737 MAX scandal. (NYT)

In this episode of Trekking Through Compliance, we consider the episode Return to Tomorrow which aired on February 9, 1968, Star Date 4768.3.

Story Synopsis

The Enterprise receives a distress call from a planet hundreds of light years too distant to have been visited by any Earth ship. Spock determines that the planet is similar to Earth, but older, and also that its atmosphere was ripped away a half million years ago. Spock also detects no sign of life. As the Enterprise nears the planet, a voice identifying itself as Sargon asks Kirk to assume a standard orbit about the planet. The voice also addresses the crew of the Enterprise as “my children.” Spock detects a power source originating 100 miles below the planet’s surface, and Kirk and McCoy prepare to beam down. Kirk wants Spock to stay on board, but the Enterprise loses all power when he states this. When Kirk changes his mind and proposes to bring Spock along, all power comes back on. Astrobiologist Dr. Anne Mullhall also tags along, claiming she has received an order to accompany them despite the fact that Kirk has given no such order. Strangely, the security guards get left behind when the transporter is activated. Furthermore, after arriving, the communicators function through 100 miles of rock despite the fact that they should not.

The landing party discovers evidence of an ancient culture on a planet whose habitable surface was destroyed long ago by a self-inflicted cataclysm. Sargon is revealed as a spherical receptacle containing pure energy which is the “essence” of Sargon. Sargon reports that his people colonized the galaxies 6000 centuries ago, and that humans and Vulcans may be their descendants. When Kirk asks Sargon how he can help, Sargon occupies Kirk’s body. This transference produces great stress on Kirk’s body, causing McCoy to become alarmed. Sargon then asks to borrow the bodies of Spock and Anne Mullhall for the surviving minds of Felissa (his wife) and Hanoc (a member of the opposing side in the great war), the only other two survivors, so that they may construct androids. Kirk, Spock, and Mullhall voluntarily agree, and the receptacles are beamed aboard the Enterprise for transference.

As before, the stress is too great on the human bodies, although Spock’s body proves to be rugged enough to sustain Hanoc temporarily. Sargon leaves Hanoc in charge of formulating a metabolism depressant, but Hanoc takes the opportunity to doctor the formula to kill Sargon (and Kirk) so that he can stay in Spock’s body. Nurse Chapel notices that the formula is incorrect, but Hanoc erases her memory and she forgets noticing this. While he is possessed by Hanoc, Spock flashes uncharacteristic smiles on several occasions.

Hanoc finds that Felissa is also desirous of keeping her body and does not wish to return to her receptacle. Meanwhile, Sargon is feeling the effects of the incorrect serum, and even Dr. McCoy cannot save him from dying in Kirk’s body. Felissa attempts to engage McCoy in her scheme to remain in Mullhall’s body while pretending to have left it, but then relents.

Sargon, who reveals himself to still be alive, expresses his approval. He and Felissa now scheme to force Hanoc to leave Spock’s body. They restore Kirk to perfect health, but destroy the receptacle containing Spock’s consciousness in order and attempt to administer a deadly poison. Hanoc has taken control of the ship, but Nurse Chapel manages to inject him. It turns out that Sargon has been sharing consciousness with Nurse Chapel, and that the hypo had actually only contained a tranquillizer. Spock is therefore returned to perfect health, but Hanoc, who had fled Spock’s body believing it to have been poisoned, is now destroyed. Sargon realizes that the temptation for he and Filissa to abuse their god-like powers is too great, and he and Felissa desert their bodies and fade into oblivion.

Fun Fact

This is the second time a reference is made in Star Trek about the Apollo moon program, after Tomorrow is Yesterday. Filmed more than a year-and-a-half before the first lunar landing, Kirk rhetorically asks McCoy in this episode, “Do you wish that the first Apollo mission hadn’t reached the Moon?” The first Apollo mission in which astronauts orbited the moon was Apollo 8 in December 1968, ten months after this episode aired. However, the Apollo 11 astronauts were the first to reach the moon by landing on it in 20 July 1969, after Star Trek was canceled. Kirk’s next comments about going “on to Mars and then to the nearest star” seem to suggest that he is referring to the Apollo 11 lunar mission.

Compliance Takeaways:

  1. High risk can mean high reward.
  2. What is your risk management protocol?
  3. How do you account for changing risk?


Excruciatingly Detailed Plot Summary by Eric W. Weisstein for Return to Tomorrow to Tomorrow

The DOJ announces a new compliance initiative from the antitrust division. Tom and Jay consider it and some of this week’s top compliance and ethics stories which caught their collective eyes.

  1. What can companies learn from FIFA’s ongoing corruption scandals? Vera Cherepanova in Navex Global’s Ethics and Compliance Matters
  2. A close look at FCPA related securities litigation. Kevin Lacroix in his always excellent D&O Dairy.
  3. What is the new DOJ Antitrust Evaluation of Corporate Compliance Programs? Mike Volkov takes a deep dive in a two part series on Corruption Crime and Compliance. (Part 1and Part 2)
  4. How much does a steak and lobster dinner really cost you? Jonathan Rusch considers on Dipping Through Geometries.
  5. What does it take to be a great Board of Director? Henry Wolfe in CCI.
  6. How should you evaluate ESG factors in a business analysis? Todd Northman and Savannah Fox (no relation) explore in CCI.
  7. SEC says 7 years not enough time to evaluate whistleblower information to make an Dodd-Frank whistleblower award (or deny it). Kristin Broughton reports in the WSJ Risk and Compliance Journal.
  8. Another DPA in the UK. Another set of not guilty verdicts for individuals. Dylan Toklar explains in the WSJ Risk and Compliance Journal.
  9. Matt Kelly travels and considers All Things Compliance. First he blogs about it in Radical Compliance. Then he and Tom ponder it in a podcast on Compliance into the Weeds.
  10. Tom hosts Affilated Monitors in Houston! The AMI gang will be discussing the 2019 Guidance on Monday July 22, from 4:30 to 6 PM at Goode Company Seafood, 10211 Katy Freeway. Questions and RSVP to Best of all, there is no charge to attend.
  11. Join Jay and Tom as they are hosted by Convercent for part one of Convercent’s webinar series on the DOJ Guidance: From the Benczkowski Memo to the 2019 Guidance, on Thursday July 25that 12 noon EDT. Registration and information is here.
  12. Join Tom and AMI’s Jerry Coyne have a five-part podcast series next week on the use of monitors by State AGs.

Tom Fox is the Compliance Evangelist and can be reached at Jay Rosen is Mr. Monitor and can be reached at

For more information on how an independent monitor can help improve your company’s ethics and compliance program, visit our sponsor Affiliated Monitors at

JULY 19, 2019 BY TOM FOX

In today’s edition of Daily Compliance News:

  • Qualcomm spanked in Europe for antitrust behavior. (NYT)
  • UK Financial Reporting Council gets a new leader.(WSJ)
  • Epstein denied bail. (WSJ)
  • Zuma about to quit anti-corruption probe. (FT)